Writers can be solitary, lonely souls and still bring in a paycheck. Give them electricity, internet access, and enough caffeine and they will get the job done. Twenty-five years ago they only needed typewriter ribbons and a library card (and the caffeine). However, one thing hasn't changed. Every writer needs readers.
Okay, some writers don't care, but you do. Your blogs are the heart and soul of business content '- maybe several businesses. As a business blogger, you know that you are obligated to write friendly, informative material which will be helpful to the visitors of a website which may, or may not, be your own. You have been tasked with establishing a beneficial, pragmatic, and authoritative voice on that website. In marketing we hear about the ROI, or return on investment. You, as the writer, are the investment, and readers are the return that you are charged with bringing in. To be successful as a blogger, you must bring in a lot of readers.
How you accomplish that goal is as vital to your job as knowing the difference between the active voice and the passive voice. If you research this subject, and research is as much a part of the writer's day as breathing and caffeine, then you will find seemingly endless advice. There are, however, five tried and true methods for generating readership which you must practice, and they will bring results.
1. Apply Interlinks
Unless you are writing a blog for the first time, you have a body of work to fall back on. As you compose your draft, or even as you consider your next topic, make a list of previous blogs which you can link back to for more information. This accomplishes several objectives. It affords your reader the opportunity to delve a little deeper into the subject matter without you having to reiterate peripheral material, and it establishes your expertise on the topic. It also is a way of drawing the reader into becoming a possible subscriber.
2. Share on Social Media
Hopefully, when you post your blogs, you also post links to them on certain social media sites. Be as social as you can, and never stop trying to expand your network of friends, family, associates, and acquaintances. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+ are the big four for written content. You should also consider Pinterest, and some of the content publishing sharing sites like StumbleUpon. Work your magic.
3. Emphasize Keywords
Find the important keywords for people who are researching the topic you are writing about, and then insert them into the body of your text. Emphasize them by typing them in bold font. As your blog is scanned for relevance, those words will stop the reader's eyes, and draw them into the article.
4. Establish Authorship on Google
Get a Google+ account, if you don't have one, and fill in as much detail as possible in your profile. By all means, include a good headshot of yourself, not a picture of your dog. Make sure that your Google+ name matches that of your byline, and that your Google+ profile is visible for all to see. If you have a WordPress blog, they have plug-ins which will do the rest for you. If not, link your content to your Google+ profile, and link your profile back to your content. In time, Google will inform you that you have established authorship with them, and your picture will appear next to your blog's listing on Google. This is important because people are more likely to read an article they find on Google if there he author's picture appears. Familiarity breeds content.
5. Focus on the Writing
Nothing will increase readership better than great writing. You can take all these steps, which will help people find your work, but if you aren't writing good copy it won't matter. Be concise, be clear, and review the blog many times before publishing. The most discerning reader should be you.
Then, write another blog.
Gary Locke is a semi-professional hyphenate and the Content Editor for CommonPlaces. He has enjoyed a long career in theater and multimedia, and still hopes to one day drive the Batmobile.